Top 6 Acting Schools In India

Acting in India has always been a special career- a career that almost every Indian dreams of pursuing while growing up ( of course, apart from becoming a hero, we aspire to become cricketers too).

But to be able to learn to enrapture an audience with words and expressions is not everyone’s cup of tea- you got to have a lot of skills. A great learning method can really help an individual carve their acting skills to perfection. And this is where the right acting school can make or break an aspiring actor's career and dreams.


Over the past 100 years, many legendary actors have moved us with their amazing on screen presence. Earlier- it was a famous saying that an actor is born, but in the last 50 years- Indian acting schools have given us some of the finest actors that we love today.

From Naseeruddin Shah to Shah Rukh Khan, Shabana Azmi to Deepika Padukone, many of the celebrated faces today have crafted their acting skills at a drama school.

Today, we take a look at the top 6 acting schools in India.

1. National School of Drama (NSD), Delhi. NSD was established back in 1959 by Sangeet Natak Akademi which was then taken under the Ministry of Culture and is India’s finest School of Drama to date. NSD holds a special spot in every aspiring actor's heart because of its syllabus; from learning how to write scripts and pen actual dialogues, one learns how to bring a character to life.


National School of Drama- NSD

The school has plenty of outreach programs spanning courses for exchanges and experience in various European and American countries. The best part is that NSD fees annually come to 8500/-; the hard part being the fact that it is extremely hard to get an admission. Each year, only 26 students are selected, with 13 seats for reservation, alongside the fact that not more than 2 people get picked from the same state. Very well-known alumni include Nasiruddin Shah, Irrfan Khan, Anupam Kher, Ratna Pathak, Om Puri, and others.

Check out their courses, fee structure, and everything else here 2. Film and Television Institute of India (FTII), Pune

Located in Pune, FTII was started in 1960 by Shekhar Kapur. It birthed Shabana Azmi to the astoundingly talented actress she is today.

FTII, Pune

FTII has some fabulous international collaborations ever since the establishment of its Outreach Program with France, Australia, Germany, and others. The 2-year PG Diploma course in screen acting costs about 1 lakh 30 thousand, with only ten seats open each year. Notable alumni include Danny Denzongpa, Rajkumar Rao, Shabana Azmi, Jaya Bachchan, Mithun Chakraborty, and others. Check out their courses, fee structure, and everything else here 3. Anupam Kher’s Actor Prepares, Mumbai


As the name suggests, Actor Prepares was started by Anupam Kher in 2005, a great reason aside from its faculty which makes the school so great. With their personalized attention to beginners and great faculty, one can see why it has come a long way and joined the list with some of the oldest schools in existence.

Actor Prepares
Image Credits: Great Indian Journey

Anupam Kher is himself an NSD graduate, after which he set up the institute with an aim to hone young talent. The Institute is regularly visited by celebrated Bollywood stars for workshops or training centers, keeping it busy and its’ students inspired. The three-month full-time Diploma course in acting costs 2,37,000/- complete. The alumni consist of some of the biggest faces in Bollywood like Deepika Padukone, Hritik Roshan, Kirti Kulhari, Gauhar Khan, and others.

Check out their courses, fee structure, and everything else here

4. Whistling Woods International, Mumbai

An expensive one on this list, Whistling Woods lives up to its high fees. International in its name, brand, and outlook, Whistling Woods was established in 2006 by filmmaker Subhash Ghai, the creator of the 1997 SRK starrer Pardes which won the Filmfare Award for Best Screenplay and the 1992 Saudagar that won him the Filmfare Award for the Best Director.

Whistling Woods International

Affiliated with the Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Whistling Woods has been included in the list of the best drama schools around the world by The Hollywood Reporter in the year 2010. A three-year Bachelors in Acting program costs 14,00,000 in total, but the institute offers a flexible learning module, alongside brilliant faculty to back up its prices. Alumni include Aahana Kumar, Akash Dhar, Anil Mange, and others. Check out their courses, fee structure, and everything else here

5. Barry John’s Acting Studio, Mumbai Barry John is a big name in the field of acting. The institute operates under the Theatre in Education Trust since its establishment in the year 1997. Barry John’s studio makes it to this list, and almost every other, because of their view of making an actor so great that they themselves are shocked by what they see.

Barry John’s Acting Studio

The Institute offers an intensive 4 months Diploma course in Acting at their Mumbai branch at INR 1,75,000/- for the entire course. Another alumnus with a big circle stars like Shah Rukh Khan, Manoj Bajpayee, Rana Daggubati, Richa Chadda, and others.

Check out their courses, fee structure, and everything else here

6. Asian Academy of Film and Television, various locations The Asian Academy of Film and Television has four different institutions across four major Indian cities, with the first one being established in 1990 at Noida. AAFT offers a wide range of courses for one to complete their education in, with all-rounded, holistic learning and development of every actor.

Asian Academy of Film and Television

AAFT Noida offers a dual-certification program for three years in B.Sc. Cinema along with a Diploma in Acting for the complete cost of 6 lakhs per annum, but it is highly recommended for people to check their website and fill the form to see how much are the actual fees. Anil Kapoor and Boney Kapoor act as the working Directors at this institute while the alumni include names like Luv Ranjan, Arjun Kapoor, and others.

Check out their courses, fee structure, and everything else here


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Anushka Chandra, Content Writer, Skyshot Media

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